SK Telecom platform knows what subscribers are doing

South Korean operator SK Telecom has launched a platform that it says will provide real time information on what its customers are doing. The Context Platform uses data collected by a customer’s smartphone, if it is embedded with the platform, via its camera, GPS, sensors and wifi to discover contextual information about that subscriber.

The firm explained that the platform allows it to make informed guesses about whether  the user is walking, for example, as the handset detects the user’s repeated movement and speed via its sensors and GPS. It then analyses the data it has collected through an algorithm to conclude that the user is “in a walking situation”. SK Telecom added that the more the platform repeats this process of analysis, the more accurate the platform becomes.

The operator said the platform can also make conclusions based on customers’ usage patterns involving social networking, voice calls, SMS and applications.

The operator announced the platform at Mobile World Congress in Barcelona and also showcased a service running on the platform. ‘Life Log’ monitors a user’s daily life, such as their leisure activities, habits and health-related activities. The subscriber can later look up their past records and statistics.

Other examples of services that can run on the platform include money management applications and recommended song playlists, SK Telecom added.

The operator said it “will take all steps necessary” to safeguard the sensitive personal information on its subscribers. It said that information generated from each smartphone can only be stored in and accessed via that particular device. It added that it is currently developing an application lock feature and a feature that records certain pre-selected types of information to prevent that information being accessed by third parties.

“Along with Big Data, Context Platform is an important pillar of the newly emerging field of ICT intelligence,” said Park Jin-hyo, SVP and head of network technology R&D Center at SK Telecom.

“With Context Platform, smartphones will truly become an indispensable life partner for customers.”

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